While attending the ASCA World Clinic in Washington, Swimming World interviewed Chris Morgan, head coach of Crimson Aquatics, on his experience with the art of Kaatsu. Kaatsu is a form of training where an athlete’s blood flow during dryland or water workouts is modified through pressure straps.
The method was started in Japan in the 1960’s when a doctor realized that when he slowed down circulation, the soreness the next day was similar to the soreness that he felt after weight training. What the coaches and athletes found was that when circulation was reduced, lactic acid built up in the muscles and a signal was sent to the pituitary gland that then released natural growth hormones and other healing factors. The hormones are the same hormones that build muscle or aid recovery. Morgan referred to this induced stimulation and its affects as a “Bio-Hack”. Morgan clarified his statement by saying that the method is WADA approved.
Morgan explains and shows how the bands are inflated using a device that accurately measures pressure. Once the bands are inflated, different dryland and water exercises can be performed by athletes. According to Morgan, this is the only product that mirrors “race physiology” as it relates to race lactate production and race pain during a workout.
The product has been used by 2012 Open Water Olympian Alex Meyer, World Junior Champion Michael Andrew, and Alabama head coach Jonty Skinner.
Watch the SWTV Interview Below